UPDATED ON 6: Elevated Sewer System Methane Levels Cause Aiken G - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

UPDATED ON 6: Elevated Sewer System Methane Levels Cause Aiken GlaxoSmithKline Plant Evacuation

Posted: Updated:
Aiken, SC -


***UPDATED 3:52 P.M. on Tuesday, October 22nd***

GlaxoSmithKline has issued a statement concerning an evacuation that happened at its Aiken plant Tuesday morning. Read the text of the statement below:

This morning the GSK Consumer Healthcare Manufacturing site in Aiken South Carolina shut down operations. This decision was taken due to the presence of elevated methane levels detected in the sewer system at the site.

Employees inside the plant were evacuated immediately and other areas of the site have been cleared for safety and security purposes. We have communicated to employees that they are not expected to return to work until we have fully addressed this issue. Managers have been in contact with their teams and all employees are encouraged to check in with the site before leaving for work.

No safety risk was posed to the surrounding community.

We have worked with all the key authorities to investigate the issue and a small maintenance crew, escorted by the fire department, remains at the site.  We continue to work with all the appropriate local authorities to ensure that this incident is managed safely, effectively and minimum disruption to the local community and our employees.

The site employs around 200 people and manufactures Nicotene Lozenges, Panadol, Alli, Ecotrin, Beano, Sominex, Phazyme, Vivarin, Tagamet, Feosol, Contac, Nytol.


***UPDATED 2:10 P.M. on Tuesday, October 22nd***

WJBF News Channel 6 has learned GlaxoSmithKline workers are still not back at work.

We first reported there was a methane leak, but emergency officials on the scene will neither confirm nor deny there is a methane leak. We still have not received word on exactly caused the alarm and subsequent evacuation.

We have reached out to GlaxoSmithKline for comment on this story, but they have been unreachable.


***POSTED at 10:57 A.M. on Tuesday, October 22nd***

WJBF News Channel 6 has learned the GlaxoSmithKline plant in the Verenes Industrial Park in Aiken has been evacuated.

The plant is located at 65 Windham Boulevard.

Officials tell us, the plant was evacuated after an alarm went off at 8:01 a.m. Tuesday morning.

We are told there are emergency workers on the scene for a reported methane leak.

Workers will not be let back into the building until after noon.

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